Since 2012, SparkTrack has teamed with clients in areas from architecture, design and real estate to retail, entertainment, food and fitness. Here’s an overview of client needs and value added through SparkTrack services.
Sunrise Creative Gourmet
Sunrise Creative Gourmet, a well-known name in the Iron Range, has been making Italian pastas, sauces and ethnic specialties in Hibbing, MN, since 1913. In November 2013, they planned to open a Twin Cities retail location, factory outlet and a cooperative commercial kitchen with dedicated gluten-free space. They wanted to build awareness for their new retail location, establish a presence online and through social media and host a grand opening event.
SparkTrack created an annual communications plan tied to Sunrise’s calendar of events that included public relations, social media strategies and event planning for their grand opening event in March 2014. Over the course of four months, we grew social channel engagement, created targeted email campaigns and reached out to the local food community and media and hosted a grand opening event that attracted over 500 people.
We achieved this through social media strategies focused on visuals, content, contests and partner connections . Our public relations strategies were based on research, trends and audience; direct product delivery to the media and foodies; and marketing tactics including print advertising, email campaigns and promotions. Sunrise had mentions and/or full articles appear January – March in the StarTribune, Pioneer Press, Minnesota Monthly, The St. Paul Monitor, City Pages and The Line Magazine.
“Working with Jen upon opening our new retail location has proved to be one the smartest decisions that I’ve made. Jen’s organizational skills, industry contacts, and social media insight all were key factors attributing to the successful launch of our new business. Jen will be on board with us as we add new items to our product line and our business continues to grow.” — Tom Forti, owner Sunrise Creative Gourmet.
LTI Management handles planning, design and construction management of complex real estate projects in healthcare, corporate real estate and educational facilities. LTI Management launched in 2013 and needed communications support to further define the brand and messaging, build awareness through reaching new clientele and media and create a social media presence.
SparkTrack helped LTI Management with a news release, targeted list creation and management for email campaigns, conference planning and follow-up, SEO analysis, website updates and the setting up and management of Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus accounts.
“Jennifer understood my challenges as a small business owner and crafted a marketing communications plan that fit my style, approach and key objectives. She is helping me put that plan into action and driving the pieces of marketing that make a business successful. I can share concepts and ideas with her and she can easily run with them — creating the messaging, tone and tools to communicate it at the right time to the right audience.” — Wendy Rogers, owner, LTI Management
Lifestyle Management (LSM Fitness) provides personal training for individuals through in-home and onsite sessions, golf-specific training in their Bearpath Golf Course location, and personal training for employees onsite at numerous Twin Cities corporations. LSM Fitness’ business since 1990 has grown through client referrals and loyal corporate clients. They were ready to take their business to the next level by stepping up awareness efforts, communicating more directly with their clients and a defining a social media presence.
SparkTrack provided a brand re-launch strategy for the Twin Cities markets by defining audiences for their different business tracks from individual to corporate to sport-specific. For a smaller company of 15 employees, they are diverse in their offerings. We segmented approaches, created content for audiences and planned a new social media rollout focused on video that conveys their expertise. We created or improved social channels including YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook to support this new effort.
“I would recommend Jen to anyone who wants to take their business to the next level. She did her due diligence to understand our vision as a company. Engaging all aspects, she created a personalized business model for us and worked quickly to build our social media platforms. She simplified the process of connecting with our clients and made it more obtainable.” – Paul Pribyl, owner, Lifestyle Management
Albertsson Hansen Architecture
Albertsson Hansen creates residential architecture from small remodeling projects and additions, to new houses, retreat houses, cabins, outbuildings, and barns. They launched a responsive (mobile-friendly) and Pinterest-friendly website in August 2013. They sought public relations and social media services to drive traffic to their new site and launch their Pinterest efforts.
SparkTrack created a public relations and social campaign surrounding the website launch. As one of the handful of architectural firms encouraging a dialogue about design and transparency about their work and design process through their website, we made the connection with local and national media in the architecture and design community. We designed an email campaign, populated the Pinterest account with design concepts and visuals and trained in staff to manage the firm’s various social accounts.
Sarah Nettleton Architects
Sarah Nettleton Architects has been designing new and renovated residential and commercial projects since 1978 with a focus on sustainability throughout the design and construction process. Sarah needed a full communications plan, event support, thought leadership ideas and website and social strategies.
SparkTrack crafted an annual communications plan including recommendations for advertising and editorial opportunities, branding and messaging and tactical approaches to reach public and peer audiences. We built thought leadership concepts around Sarah’s book, The Simple Home, The Luxury of Enough (published in 2007) and a speaking engagement at the 2013 AIA Minnesota Convention. We also designed an email campaign and public relations and social media efforts including a blog, to support her speaking and event activities and news over the year.
Sarah’s client’s home on the September AIA Minnesota Homes by Architects Tour of 27 homes attracted the highest number of visitors and attracted local media attraction with news and videos airing the week prior to the tour.
“I hired Jennifer to get my firm a social media presence, and it worked! Her prior big success driving visitors to my 2010 AIA Minnesota Homes by Architects Tour was repeated in 2013 – good work!” Sarah Nettleton, owner, Sarah Nettleton Architects
Bruce Knutson Architects
Bruce Knutson Architects, founded in 1975, is a Twin Cities boutique architectural firm known for their hands-on approach to residential and commercial projects from the design process through construction. With their 25-year celebration coming up, BKA wanted a brand refresh, a new website (currently in progress), email campaign design and public relations, award submission and social media support.
SparkTrack delivered project and firm overview content for an award submission, marketing support and consultation services for website firm selection. Ongoing services include recommendations for public speaking engagements and thought leadership opportunities, website copywriting, public relations and social media strategies and email campaigns.
“I am very pleased to recommend Jennifer for her professionalism, attention to detail and insights regarding the redesign of my logo and branding of my business and social media applications. We are currently a work in progress, but I am very impressed with how the process is going and the important guidance Jennifer has been offering along the way. I am very excited to see our final product!” — Bruce Knutson, owner, Bruce Knutson Architects
Shelter Architecture, architecture and social media ground-breakers, design lively, modern homes, restaurants, office spaces and more. With new thought leadership on their team, they wanted to tap into new markets and make connections for all areas of their practice.
SparkTrack analyzed the current market and Shelter’s marketing and social media to date and pulled together an annual communications plan. They were already doing many things well, so it was a matter of seeking out more editorial prospects, event concepts and networking avenues that would translate into real value (meaning new clients). We proactively targeted advertising opportunities and met with local editors based on audiences alignment and editorial content.
Studio Hive is a Twin Cities architectural and interior design firm with a focus on corporate offices, learning environments, living environments, hospitality and sports and entertainment facilities. They are busy with design and project work and sought external writing services for a design award submission.
SparkTrack worked with the designer to submit the project by conducting an interview, visiting the project site and writing the submission based on the criteria, which focused on translating the project’s design into a larger more meaningful social context.
“We retained SparkTrack to assist us with creating copy content for a national awards program. Jennifer’s experience was beneficial in telling our story to the jurors, and we are happy to report that we are among the firms that were awarded.” — Shawn Gaither, principal, Studio Hive
Avabar, a smartphone app for an improved nightlife experience, launched version one in April 2013 (version 2 is currently in the works). Billed as a disruptive innovation, the app was designed to connect people to happening bars and restaurants, catered drink deals and like-minded people all in real time. The start-up company needed a public relations, social and communications strategy.
SparkTrack created regional (five markets) and national communications and public relations plans, researched industry-related trends and the app and mobile market, and conducted interviews with strategic partners to recommend an SEO and digital firm and additional public relations and event support.
We also created and designed email campaigns tied directly to social media for our internal, employee audience, who essentially served as the app’s brand ambassadors based on gorilla marketing tactics and the brand approach. For numerous promotional and media events, we orchestrated all of the details from photography and video to social and from giveaways to signage and follow-up.
“Jen was instrumental in helping transition Avabar from concept to reality. Her accountability, work ethic and attention to detail were greatly appreciated.” – Perry Schmidt, Chief Financial Officer